Saturday, November 27, 2010

Michigan Adventure Day 5 and 6

The last couple of days have flowen but with lots family and fun. Currently, we are in a hotel room in Farmington Hills. We decided on the short 2 hour trip yesterday from Claire to Farmington Hills that we need a full day of rest before attempting to make the 12 trip home. I have to say this was a very smart and needed day. I choose not to attempt Black Friday shopping in a strange area, instead finished up most of my shopping online. The Disney store had an awesome sale with prices at $5, $10 $15 and $20 on top of that I received 20% off and free shipping. I ended up purchasing 10 items that I can't list because of Christmas for $75 total shipped.

We stopped in Birch Run initially for Starbucks, ou treat on this trip. Matt causally asked if I want to hit a particular sale. I responsed with the jean sale at Old Navy. He stayed in the car with the kids and I ran in to purchase 2 pair of jeans for Matt, 2 pair of jeans for myself and a pair each for Amanda and Haley, for a total of 95. I know that Haley has spent this much on one pair in the past was I was really pleased. I was even more pleased to find "short" jeans for both Haley and myself. I have never founded this in the regular Old Navy and boy does it feel awesome to have jean fit without needing to hem!

We checked into the hotel and spent about 10 minutes before heading to Matt's brothers house. We all had an awesome time and some good mexican turkey cassrole. This was the first time in several years that the 3 brothers have been together on a happy occasion. They really enjoyed each other and both myself and the kids could not have asked for a better time. Time did get away from us and by 9:15 we loaded up the kids to head back to the hotel. We had missed the point at which everyone sleeps wells and gone into overload. Zach woke up 5 times and Kendall 2x prior to 7am this morning.

Currently the kids are on the 2 hour of a needed nap. We have already spent some time inthe pool this morning and plan to go to Costco and Trader Joes this afternoon. We may end up back at Matt 's brother house if he calls them. Our plan is to finish packing the car tonight after the kids go to sleep. We hope to hit the road around 8am with breakfast eaten. Our goal is to make the trip in one day and arrive Lexington sometime around 11pm. Sounds simple doesn't it!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Currently, I am sitting in a hotel in Clare MI. Zach has having a allergic reaction to something. We have tried to be careful about what he eats but it is nearly impossible to monitor everything he touchs and he loves to find things on floors and eat as well. Matt and I are also considering the possibility that he is allergic to something in the hotels we are staying at or the new t-shirts that I purchased and didnt pre-wash just for this trip. A third possibility is that he has a virus that is working its way out because that has been the case in the past. He is sleeping and hopeful will feel better.

I wanted to post a few more things I am thankful for as well. I should post 14 to catch up for the past 2 weeks so here is the attempt.
  1. Bendryll and the ability to try and make Zach feel better without causing everyone else to sit and wait in a strange hospital or walk in clinic
  2. A very gracious hostess who has included our family in her celebrations just because of who we are.
  3. PBS and Disney that can be seen in all of our hotel rooms so far and manage to make the girls feel at home and on a type of schedule during our week of traveling.
  4. Having a God that I know is in control, my devotion this morning was about being still and knowing HE is God! This was also the sense received at church Sunday. I am waiting for direction. I know I must be still and KNOW he is God.
  5. The ability to text and/or call my older girls at any point. I wish they were with us but I also know that they are happy and ok, even 800 miles away.
  6. The ability to shop and buy things this year, without being concerned that we may not be able to pay a certain bill.
  7. The ability to eat out and even grab extra snacks while traveling without the worry of not having enough money to make it home. This sounds silly but until you have been in that position it is a huge relieft.
  8. A car that was found at just the right time. If I could have said this is the car we need at this point in our life I don't think I could have designed it better. God does provide in his timing!
  9. Neighbors and friends that continue to support and encourage us, even if they never realize how much we need it!
  10. Our military.... a special thanks to both Derrick and Eric G.
  11. The internet and it ability to stay in touch with friends and family as well as the hours of entertainment it provides.
  12. My husband who not only encourages me on a regular basis but continues to mature and amaze me at how great of a dad he is.
  13. Doctors and others who are able to not only identify problems with my kid but provide solutions that were not available even 30 years ago.
  14. The ability to love, laugh, cry and blog about it. A freedom I take for granted most days!

Happy Thanksgiving! Don't forget to count your blessings!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Michigan Adventure Day 2

Matt summed up the weather correctly COLD! The high today was 36 at 9am and the wind is blowing so it is so cold even I can't make it from the hotel to the car without a coat. We arrived at Bronner's just prior to opening so I wanted to get a picture in front of the giant Santa of Lily and Kendall. I thought it would be cool to compare it to the one I have of Amanda and Haley the first time they visited. Kendall was going to have nothing to do with this idea. She was terrified, I had to hold her to even get a picture. She would not even touch the top of his feet. I LOVE Bronner's they were currently running a promotion for 4.99 they would ship any purchase over $100 home, to sweeten the deal if they ship to a non-Michigan address you don't have to pay the sales tax. I ended up buying a house for my snow village, several new ornaments and a stocking holder for 5 stockings. We also ended up buying snack while there. Zach was so hungry he ate an entire hot dog! We decided to pick up lunch on the way back and eat in our room. I went to the outlet mall while the kids took a nap. I found some awesome deals including clothes for the older girls for Christmas, ski bibs for Lily, several cute long sleeve shirts for the girls for under $5, a pair of cords for Z and several shirts for me. I went back and picked up Matt and the kids before heading to Old Navy. Matt and I both found several shirts, gloves and hats. In fact, on the way out of town on Wednesday, we went back to Old Navy to pick of up additional shirts Matt. The only stressful part of the day was bedtime. It is taking the kids about 2 hours to fall asleep and it is not a pleasant two hours for us either.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Michigan Adventure Day 1

I will have to admit that I was not at all excited to start this trip. The logisticis alone would scare a normal person. Traveling 800 plus miles in a 10 year old car with 3 children 4 and under, staying in 3-5 different cities with only 2 stops being planned add in the family visiting and seriously would you want to attempt it?

We planned to leave on Sunday afternoon following lunch with my family. The idea was that should give us a few good hours of travel. It went smoother than plan. We actually ended up over half way staying in Dover OHIO on Sunday night. We used Tom Tom for both dinner and for locating the hotel and it's phone number in advance. Everyone settled fairly quickly and we had a decent night of sleep. We decided to try and make it to the Franklin Cider Mill. We ate lunch just inside the OHIO state line and made it to the mill in the early afternoon. Unfortately the mill is closing in a week so we were not able to watch the process. They did enjoy feeding the ducks and watching Daddy "stomp them away. We decide to go by Keith and Belinda's for a potty break. We ended up staying over an hour. We arrived in Birch Run about 4pm. I chose not go shopping tonight because of the nasty rain and I am tired.

The only problem of the day was that the car decided to cut off at the Cider Mill. We are still not sure why but it has ran just fine since. The kids have travelled really really well. They enjoyed the DVD player and the white boards. I hope the rest of the trip goes as smoothly.

My Intentions....

My intentions were good, I had planned to continue to post at least twice last week. But they say the best of intentions… Anyway I am sure that I will be able to make up for some lost time this week. Currently we are traveling the OHIO turnpike on our way to Bloomsfield Hills MI to visit the cider mill. I am going to use this post to catch up on the events of the past week. This past Saturday deserves a full blog post of it's own so I will save that for a day that I need additional material. I plan to post a new blog at least once a day and more if I have the time and material to write. Most of the week was spent trying to stay ahead of the game for Saturday which included Angel food distribution, a quiz, a birthday party and completion of packing to leave. IF you haven't figured it out yet this will be a stream of consciousness post to try and bring the blog up to date.

Last week because of the extra day off that I had on Thursday, I was able to spend a good part of Saturday and Sunday assembling and completing my snow village. I will try and post pictures once we return home. My plan was to have this up so that went we get to Bronner's , I will know what I want to purchase to include this year. I am convinced I need to purchase some flamingos and maybe a "trailer". I will definite get at least one new building piece and one other accessory while there.

On Saturday we also had scheduled family pictures and dinner at Outback as a Christmas gift for my parents. These pictures ended up taking two hours so it was a VERY frustrating experience but my brother instead of my children was the one who was rude and got in trouble. Dinner was awesome!

I am currently typing on the netbook which we purchased because of this trip and because I wanted something small to use at home to free up the desktop for the older girls to use for school and for Lily to play games on. Matt's laptop is currently 5 plus years old and a bear to use. In addition the battery will only last one hour. The battery life on this is supposed to be 8 hours so we shall see. One of the neat features this netbook has was word software already installed it is concerned a starter version but so far I cannot find a need to upgrade! I have never had a word count visible before and thought that man now I need to make sure that each post is at least 500 words long unless it contains pictures. I am hoping in the future to limit post to that as well. I am currently at 488 words so I am going to end this post and then hopefully write a post about Saturday. I do plan to only schedule post every 12 hours so each one will have time of its own.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thankful Thursday

Today is November the 11th, since I was able to list 7 items last Thursday, I was thankful for, today I will add the 4 to equal 11.

1.Matt's unemployment- yes this is strange but it has allowed us to both have more time to spend with the kids. It also has really opened his eyes to how much stuff needs to get done around here on a daily basis. It is also teaching me to pray for my husband and not to worry about money because we are being provided for by our heavenly father.

2. Unexpected days off- I was schedule to work at the nursing home today. But they called yesterday to say the caseload was down so I have the entire day at home. Haley is out of school so I don't have to get dressed or leave the house at all. We have spent the morning and part of the afternoon cleaning the floors. Hopefully I can accomplish several more things to make this a successful day!

3. A new bed. It sleeps wonderfully. We waited so long and now I can't imagine sleeping on a water bed again and the air mattress was AWFUL!

4.My best friend...

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

This picture sums up our life currently....

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I have just read on a blog about listing one thing per day you are thankful for during the month of November. Well since I don't tweet and face book is too easy to forget, I thought I would for the 4 Thursdays in November make a list of the things big and small I am thankful for. I would like to do a list of at least 7 each week with no repeats but that might not happen. This week is easy

1. Remington Lee Curry- his short life has taught this family more than can be explained in words. He was our angel for those 23 days and I learned more about my faith, God's love and peace in the months since his death than in any other time in my life. I had been told that you will never understand God's peace until you experience it and that is so true. I am thankful that I was present at his birth and that I can say he was loved and is missed on a daily basis

2. My kids- Amanda, Haley, Lily, Kendall and Zach. Each one bring joy and love on a daily basis. I am so proud to be their mother and want to enjoy each precious moment we have together.

3. Matt- he is truely my soul mate and partner. We are a team and as a team we can face anything. Even when we fight I know that we are always together.

4. My parents- I was raised by two awesome Christian partners who continue to teach and guide me. I now realize how poor we were but as a child I was blessed and never thought I was missing our on anything.

5. My job- I can arrange my schedule to spend time with the kids in the mornings, at doctor appointments or whenever needed. I also get to work with my BF.

6. My church family- I recently read a blog where a church family was described as bride. This was a beautiful picture but I prefer to think of mine as a family. We can agree to disagree but always love and support each other.

7. Time alone. :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

This Halloween we chose a theme..The Wizard of OZ
Matt was the wizard,"voice behind the curtain." I was the yellow brick road, Amanda..Dorthy.. Haley...the scarecrow.. Lily..the good witch...Kendall..toto..and Zach..the tin man.

We even carried the theme to our van for Trunk or Treat

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Lily's Eye..the sequel

Yesterday, Matt and I took Lily to another Pediatric Ophthalmologist. My parents volunteered to watch the other little ones and Haley ended up home from school sick. The drive was about an hour and 15 minutes but we plan to make this our permanent change. This doctor was awesome. She answered all the questions we had and explained everything to us and gave us choices! Lily's vision is 20/60 without glass but this is with her eyes crossing. Because glasses correct the crossing then surgery is not in the future. We were final given an explanation regarding patching that made sense. If we do not patch her strong eye then Lily's brain adapts to her poor vision by crossing and then by stopping sending and receiving messages to that eye because they are out of focus. Patching 4 hours a day will last a long time meaning a year or so. The ophthalmologist did agree that Lily's glasses were not the correct power for her. Her new lens will be +9 and +9.25. We ordered the new lens and will pick these up hopefully later this week.

The exciting end to our trip was the side trip to Trader Joe's which is a grocery store specializing in whole foods with a nice selection of gluten free products. We purchased cereal, cookies and pasta for Zach.